Madrid: Barcelona and Real Madrid face off for the first major title of the Spanish season in the Copa del Rey final at the Mestalla in Valencia on Wednesday.
However, the build up to the game for both sides has been disrupted by injuries to key players.
World Player of the Year Cristiano Ronaldo is a major doubt for Real due to a hamstring injury suffered in his side’s 3-0 win over Borussia Dortmund two weeks ago.
The Portuguese hasn’t played in three games since and is unlikely to be risked with Real’s Champions League semi-final first leg against Bayern Munich just seven days away.
Brazilian full-back Marcelo is also expected to miss out due to a similar injury, but Sergio Ramos should be fit despite missing Saturday’s 4-0 win against Almeria due to a neck problem.
Madrid remain in the hunt for titles on three fronts and coach Carlo Ancelotti believes claiming the first trophy of the season will boost their chances in the Liga title race and the Champions League.
“This game is important for many reasons,” he told the club’s website.
“Firstly, because it is the first title of the season we can win and, secondly, because we are facing a great team in Barcelona. All of that lends this game a lot of importance. To win the first trophy of the season motivates us a lot.
“In the mental aspect, this game will have a lot of importance for what remains of the season. After the game, the team that wins will have more motivation, hope and desire for the rest of the campaign. I think psychologically it will be very important.”